Korean skincare is everywhere these days - from serums to ampoules and the most famous, sheet masks, trying to find the ideal routine can be difficult especially if you don’t know where to start. So, in today’s post, I have gathered some of my favourite Korean skincare products and will explain how I use them and why they’ve become such a trend.
Cleansing balms are huge in Korea, thanks to its ultra-moisturising formulations using nutrient-infused ingredients. Balm consistency cleansers melt in to the skin, remove make up and dirt and is generally used with facial cloths to remove excess product. Cleansing balms are known to leave skin soft, smooth and clean which is what we all want and why Koreans have the most amazing skin. My absolute favourite cleansing balm is Banila’s Clean It Zero Original - it’s got a lovely, soft texture, which glides on to my skin and leaves it feeling super soft.
This is where products start to have different terms, toners as we know it, can be called essences, lotions, refiners, softeners, etc for Korean skincare. Although, toners are generally of a watery consistency, they can also come in forms of a thicker liquid and be milky in colour, some with particles inside also. These types of products can be referred to as ‘super toners’, due to having exfoliating as well as brightening and resurfacing properties and the application is mostly through gently patting on to the skin as oppose to putting them on to cotton pads and swiping all over. My current go-to is the AHC Peony Bright Clearing Toner, a gorgeous, lightweight toner that smells amazing and leaves my skin feeling refreshed and looking radiant.
My favourite type of skincare product, a good moisturiser and Koreans do this so right each time. They have a particular focus on water/gel type moisturisers due to their refreshing, lightweight, yet nourishing properties. Layering is key in a Korean skincare routine and even though several types of toners, serums have already been applied prior, moisturising is never forgotten and probably the most important step. A little goes a long way with gel textured creams and I particularly love the Touch In Sol Pretty Filter Waterful Glow Cream which provides a good amount of moisture to my skin without feeling too heavy and acts as a perfect base for make-up.
Sheet masks were probably the first type of product to land in the UK market and become a hit with everyone. I heard that Koreans actually apply face masks every day to achieve good skin, and I mean, as much as it sounds excessive, if I could have skin like them, then I would absolutely follow this. Sheet masks come in different forms, for all skin types and needs depending on what you want to achieve. I love brightening and illuminating masks as well as the ultra-nourishing ones, they are also easy to apply and feel like they’re actually doing something to your skin. My all-time favourite is the Etude House Moistfull Collagen Sheet Mask, it pushes so much hydrating serum in to my skin, it’s unreal. I’ve also recently enjoyed using the Masque Bar Gold Foil Peel Off Mask which leaves my skin looking super bright and radiant. Of course, we cannot forget the eyes also - eye masks containing collagen is always a hit and I've only recently started using these uber cool gold looking ones from a brand called Suteki. They feel like jelly (which cn be a bit weird), but they're really refreshing when applied and brightens up the skin under my eyes.
Koreans are famous for their moisturised, juicy lips look and it can easily be achieved with shiny lip balms mixed with a sheer wash of colour. However, a good base is just as important, and dry, chapped lips are a big no, no. So, what can we do to combat that? Well, using lip masks of course and yes, they are a thing, believe it or not and they work pretty damn well. I personally couldn’t get along with the jelly type lip masks, but a good nourishing balm formulation, I’m all over it. Laneige is one of my favourite ever Korean skincare brands, and I highly recommend trying out their Water Sleeping Pack, an overnight mask that packs moisture in to your skin while you sleep. Another addition to their growing range is the Lip Sleeping Mask and it is absolutely brilliant. It is applied on to the lips with a spatula, and then left on overnight, in the morning, not only does the skin feel super soft, it also looks nourished and plump, ready for lipstick application.
So that’s wrap on this post, it was a rather long one, but I hope it sheds some light on the rising popularity of Korean skincare.
Have you tried any Korean brands? If yes, what products are your favourites?